Horford's jumper pulled the Hawks to 63-61 before Lawson hit two free throws and a 26-foot 3-pointer followed by Chandler's bucket that made it 70-61 and forced a timeout in the third quarter.
"We didn't have all the guys who impact the game so much," Smith said. "In the fourth quarter, they were able to string some makes together. They're a fast-breaking team and as soon as a shot's missed it seems like there are already two guys already back for a layup."
Fatigue finally kicked in during the fourth quarter when three straight baskets by Brewer capped a 10-2 run Denver used to build a 96-79 lead.
"I wish it would have kicked in a little earlier, but it did kick in and that was good," Karl said. "They've been on a long trip. And the third quarter, we looked like we were going to break it open a little bit and they would always cut back into us and finally the last five minutes we got away from them."
The Hawks won the first three games of the trip but lost the last three.
"Tired both physically and mentally," Hawks coach Larry Drew lamented. "It's been a long road trip. Fatigue does factor into at this point."
That was most evident on the fastbreak, where the Nuggets outscored the Hawks 29-13.
"It was a tough," Horford said, "but I was proud of the guys who dressed up and played. It's a long season, you deal with injuries, and guys came out and fought. We hung around, but it was very overwhelming. They were good in the fast break."
Notes: Drew said Korver strained his right big toe in Atlanta's 99-98 loss to the Los Angeles Lakers on Sunday. He stayed in the game, but soreness set in afterward. ... Anthony Tolliver started for Stevenson and Dahntay Jones started for Korver, who leads the NBA with a .462 shooting percentage on 3-pointers. ... The Nuggets have won eight of their last nine home games against Atlanta, including the last six.
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